Land Rover Downsizes Diesel Offerings, Could This Signal The End Of The Diesel V8?
Europe’s sprawling automotive industry might have been forced to grind to an abrupt halt due to the Coronavirus pandemic, but the immediate aftermath has not postponed stricter emissions standards that are scheduled to formally kick in later this year. Land Rover is preparing to launch a pair of hybrid equipped turbodiesel six cylinder engines in a bid to formally comply with these rules. However, it does come with a price according to a report from British publication Autocar.
The report states that Land Rover will bring the mild-hybrid technology that already sees duty in the Evoque and the Discovery Sport to a bigger 3.0 liter straight-six that is projected to make over 300 horsepower. Naturally a more powerful 350 horsepower version is also slated to be a part of the mix, with the former being used in base Range Rover Sport models, while the spicier powerplant being relegated to higher trims including the HST as well as the swanky Autobiography Dynamic variant.
As mentioned, the two sixes do require a sacrifice, and in this instance it is the 4.4 liter turbodiesel V8 that powers the current model. While the engine does deliver 335 horsepower and 546 lb-ft of torque, it is also a rather old unit, and since it would effectively raise Land Rover’s fleet wide average emissions output, so it would have to be axed despite heartfelt objections from buyers that indulge in the 7,700 lb towing capacity. As for the full-size Range Rover, look for that model to get the new engines too considering that both models share roughly the same performance hardware.
The electrification on board is not designed to power the Range Rover on its own, but rather, it would help make them cleaner, and the loss of two cylinders will further enhance the drive towards cleaner emissions and operations. While the company itself has not confirmed whether it will indeed be chopping the V8 or not, the writing is figuratively on the wall since the two sixes would most likely steal the spotlight from the V8 in terms of sales. Time will tell when the new engines will make their respective debuts, but with the next generation models currently in the testing phase, we suspect the wait will not be long.
Look for these engines to also filter down to Jaguar models with the XF sedan and the F-Pace SUV perhaps receiving the engines after their respective debuts at Land Rover. The duo also represent a key gamble for JLR, with the company currently undergoing a financial crisis due to the impact of the Coronavirus, as well as a collapse in Chinese sales which preceded the outbreak.